Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth

Did you know that up to 60% of patients with symptoms of IBS such as gas, wind, flatulence may have Small Intestinal Bacterial overgrowth?

What is SIBO?

According to the World journal of Gastroenterology, SIBO is defined “as an increase in the number and/or alteration in the type of bacteria in the upper gastrointestinal tract”
This refers to a condition in which there are extremely large amounts of bacteria present in the small intestine (at least 100,000 bacteria per ml of fluid).  Unfortunately, large amounts of bacteria should not be present in the small intestine. In fact, in a healthy individual, the body will try and remove large concentrations of bacteria from the small intestine using a migrating motor complex,  called MMC to sweep out the bacteria

Simply put this is a condition whereby large quantities of  bacteria, may cause a range of symptoms including gas, bloating diarrhea and constipation.

What are the symptoms of bacterial overgrowth in the small intestine?

The most common symptoms are:

  • Belching
  • Burping
  • Diarrhea
  • Malabsorption
  • Nausea
  • B12 deficiency
  • Iron deficiency
  • Fatigue
  • Gas
  • Flatulence
  • Heartburn
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Rosacea
  • Restless legs
  • Constipation
  • Inability to tolerate high fibre foods such as broccoli, beans, lentils, onions and garlic.

What are the causes of SIBO?

There are several causes- these include:

  • Food poisoning or gastroenteritis
  • Side-effect  of using Proton-pump Inhibitors or acid-suppressing medications such as Omeprazole or Lanzoprazole
  • Chrons disease
  • Stress
  • Gallbladder removal
  • Hypochlordia- low stomach acid
  • Surgery
  • Constipation
  • Lack of pancreatic enzymes

How can I get tested for SIBO?

We offer a SIBO breath test kit – Hydrogen Breath test that can be done at our clinic in London or in the comfort of your own home. This test may be very helpful if you have symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome. If you would like to make an appointment to do the SIBO test with our nurse please call 0345 1297996 or e-mail help@nutritionandvitality.co.uk and we can book you in.

SIBO Breath tests

Have any questions? Call us now!

0345 1297996

FAQ

How is the SIBO Test performed?

The test can be done either at home or in the laboratory in Central London. At the start of the test, you will need to blow into a balloon with a breath of air. The laboratory will then measure hydrogen and methane  from your   breath sample. Breath samples are collected 10 times over a 3 hour period. Before doing the hydrogen breath test you will need to  fast for 12 hours and eat a low-fibre diet. We will send you full instructions.

What does the test measure?

The test is designed to measure levels of  methane and hydrogen in your breath.  If these exceed a certain level this is diagnostic of SIBO.

How common is SIBO?

Research indicates that up to 60% of patients with IBS have SIBO.

What is the treatment of SIBO?

You will need to see a professional and take anti-bacterials -Rifaximin or natural herbal remedies may be helpful. We also recommend a low-fodmap diet. If you would like to book a consultation with call us on 0345 1297996.

Is diet important to reduce symptoms of SIBO?

Yes, diet is very important. You may need to follow a low-fodmap or SCD diet to help eradicate  the bacteria. It is important that you find suitable replacements and still eat in a balanced way. Our consultants can help you.